Is it time to step backward as we move forward in fitness?

John Platero


I believe we are in the Renaissance of the fitness era, but most people forget or are unaware of the golden Ed-Holovchik-aka-Ed-Fury_thumbera of fitness.

Charles Atlas is the man that really began the bodybuilding movement. Charles was a Sicilian who migrated to Brooklyn, NY. Coincidentally, the first Mr. Olympia was held in Brooklyn and continued to be held in NY for the next five years. However, the sport that began back east really exploded as Hollywood began incorporating these men into mainstream films. Most people don’t know the bodybuilders of the golden era such as Steve Reeves, Reg Park and Dave Draper who helped personify the “fitness look.” Ironically, the “look” moved west and the healthy, fit lifestyle became synonymous with the sun, the beach and the California Coast.

We should all be aware of how we got here and who got us here.

Here’s a list of a few names you may not be familiar with. Even so, these men were the pioneers of the bodybuilding lifestyle which eventually spilled into the female gender as well.

Dave Draper

Serge Nubret

Larry Scott

Vince Gironda

Boyer Coe

Sergio Oliva

Steve Reeves

Reg Park

Harold Poole

Earl Maynard

Chuck Sipes

Leroy Colbert

Roy Callender

Ed Corney

Bill Pearl

Bill Grant

Charles Atlas

Mickey Hargitay

We all owe these men a bit of reverence. In their time, they were an anomaly and didn’t earn much money from it. Performance enhancing drugs really didn’t exist. Hard work and diet is all they had. It was a time when a buck was a buck, families stayed together and people seemed to have pride in their workplace and country. It seems a simpler time…..

Do you know any of these men? Would you recognized them? What do you think of their physiques? Have you ever researched their training routines or eating habits? Has much changed?

It’s always good to learn from the past and to recognize the people who forged the frontier.